Beirut blast conspiracy tales abound on social media

A screenshot from a video, later shown to be fake, showing a missile in the sky shared on social media as 'proof' of an attack by Lebanon's former wartime enemy and neighbour Israel. – YouTube pic, August 12, 2020.

WITHIN hours of the Beirut mega blast, conspiracy theories on what caused the disaster in the Lebanese capital spread like wildfire on social media.

The August 4 detonation of an abandoned shipment of ammonium nitrate in Beirut port’s Hangar 12, after an initial blast and fire, cost more than 170 lives, injured thousands and left hundreds of thousands temporarily homeless. 

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